Below are the candidates for District 6. This district includes more than 4,900 members in Aboite Township in Allen County south of Aboite Center Road and accounts for 15.8% (approximately) of NREMC's membership. This year, there are four candidates running in this district.
Joe Kruyer, who resides in Aboite Township in Allen County, is on the Board of Directors and is currently serving his third term, which began in 2013. Kruyer has a bachelor’s degree in English literature and psychology from the University of Notre Dame and a bachelor's degree in civil engineering from Purdue. While at Purdue, he wrote for a Purdue engineering magazine and was part of the National Engineer Honor Society and Civil Engineering Honor Society. He has also earned a master's degree from GMI/Kettering University in manufacturing engineering.
Kruyer's career spans three decades, where he spent 22 years working in a variety of positions at General Motors Fort Wayne Assembly Plant. He ended his career there as a senior mechanical engineer. Beginning in 2008, Kruyer was a senior mechanical engineer at Steel Dynamics. He oversaw the operation of the plant's wastewater treatment facilities, utilities, fire protection, and facilities construction and maintenance. In 2014, he transitioned to a role at BAE Systems and retired in 2021.
His volunteer work includes serving on numerous mission trips to Belize and Guatemala and participating in relief efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. He also volunteers at The Chapel in southwest Fort Wayne and was the site captain during the creation of the Three Rivers Playground in Indiana Trails Park.
While serving on NREMC’s Board of Directors, Kruyer has earned the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s Credentialed Cooperative Director Certificate and the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s Board Leadership Certificate.
Kruyer has two children and five grandchildren. You'll find him gardening, his favorite hobby, or vacationing on Lake Michigan in his free time.
When asked why he'd like to serve another term, Kruyer responded, "I would like to continue to represent District 6, working with the board to have active, integrating discussions to collectively continue to fulfill our fiduciary responsibilities in leading this innovative cooperative."
Dennis O’Brien recently moved to Fort Wayne to be closer to family. O’Brien spent 30 years in uniform as a lieutenant in the Army Reserve (Field Artillery), and as commission officer (0-6) in the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS). O’Brien graduated from Xavier University, with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in physics before moving on to the University of Cincinnati to complete both a Master of Science in environmental engineering, and his doctorate in industrial hygiene.
O’Brien’s career as an industrial hygiene engineer spanned over 40 years. His first job was in the foundry at Ford Motor Co.; he later joined the USPHS, eventually rising to the rank of director of the Division of Physical Sciences and Engineering for the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health in Cincinnati, OH. Upon retirement from the USPHS, O’Brien worked in health and safety at a labor union and as an associate professor at Wayne State University. O’Brien leveraged his years of experience in the field as an expert witness in industrial hygiene for the automobile and heavy truck industries.
O’Brien has served on the finance committee of his church, been a president of a Rotary Club, and volunteered with the Boy Scouts and Junior Achievement. O’Brien and his wife, Pat, have been married for 52 years, and have three sons and 10 grandchildren.
When asked why he wants to serve on the NREMC board, he answered, “I retired from active employment about three years ago and moved to Fort Wayne last fall. I would like to become more active in my new community, and I have both industrial and managerial experience as an engineer and as an industrial hygienist. I have taught at the graduate school level, appeared in court as a technical witness for large corporations, and have a good relationship with organized labor. I have an outgoing personality and have the time and desire to serve NREMC as it attacks future challenges.”
Paul Stockinger moved to southwest Allen County in 2017. Stockinger earned his bachelor’s degree, as well as honors, from the University of South Florida in management and information systems. Postgraduate Stockinger went on to graduate with honors from the accelerated MBA program at the University of Notre Dame.
Stockinger is a lead software engineer at Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, a manufacturer focused on making electric power safer, more reliable, and more economical. Prior to this position, Stockinger held software development roles in the financial services sector with KeyBank and Chase and served as a consultant for PNC as well.
In addition to Stockinger’s software design and technology roles, he has also served as a treasurer for churches and schools in Ohio, Idaho, and Indiana at Emmaus Lutheran in Fort Wayne. At Emmaus he has led modernization efforts for budgeting and accounting systems as well as special projects such as adding solar panels and restoring a historic a bell tower.
With three kids, Stockinger is active in church and school activities. He returned to basketball coaching this past year after a long hiatus after several years as a travel soccer parent. Stockinger is also active with school, preschool, and church in several areas including marketing, working with vendors, and arranging public-private partnerships. Stockinger also serves as treasurer for his homeowners association.
Stockinger has been married to his wife, Elizabeth, for 18 years. Together they have three children and enjoy road trips around the region, weekends at the lake in Michigan, cooking, and home improvement.
Stockinger has a passion for service and marvels at how the electric system has delivered so much to so many people to improve the quality of life over the past century. He follows energy markets, market inefficiencies, and how innovative solutions lead to progress. Stockinger said, “Serving for a storied cooperative such as NREMC brings together many of my interests in one role."
Robert Trgovich is an attorney who has practiced law in the following areas: prosecution of federal crimes, defense of civil tort actions, and civil tax litigation. He has lived in the Northeastern area for 33 years. During the last nine years of his career, Trgovich was the chief executive officer for the U.S. District Court in Northern Indiana where he was responsible for overseeing all of the court’s business operations until June 30, 2021.
Trgovich graduated from Trine University with a bachelor’s degree in business management. Trgovich then completed his Juris Doctorate at the University of Notre Dame Law School, where he also worked for Elkhart Legal Aid Clinic providing free legal services to Elkhart County residents.
After law school, Trgovich served over nine years in the U.S. Navy attaining the rank of lieutenant commander. He was awarded two Navy Commendation Medals and one Navy Achievement Medal during his service. Trgovich was a Navy Judge Advocate General's (JAG) Corps officer and served as the chief prosecutor for Naval District Washington and as an aide to the judge advocate general of the Navy.
Trgovich has instructed at the college level for 16 years teaching business law and criminal law courses. His community involvement includes coaching youth sports for many years. Trgovich has also served several Fort Wayne-area churches as a deacon, treasurer, and a member of the board of trustees. Currently, he serves on the Board of Directors for his college fraternity.
Trgovich has been married to his wife, Cheryl, for 45 years, and together they have three children and eight grandchildren. Trgovich feels fortunate to have been able to serve his country and communities in the various positions he has held. He has a strong desire to continue such service. Trgovich sites his legal training, practical approach to problem solving, business acumen, financial experience, and commitment to maintaining high ethical standards as factors that would allow him to be an effective and valuable member of the NREMC Board of Directors.
Voting in the 2022 Board of Directors election begins on Thursday, August 11, and ends on Thursday, September 8 at 7:00 p.m. Results will be announced at the close of the business meeting.
Voting online is the easiest and most convenient way to cast your vote. To do so, have your ballot ready and log into your online account.
Members who choose to vote by mail are still able to do so. All members will begin receiving their mailed ballots on August 11, 2022. Follow the instructions on the ballot to learn how to cast your vote and return your ballot by mail. If you have not mailed your ballot by September 2, please bring it to the annual meeting on September 10.
Members can vote at Northeastern REMC using the tablets provided in the lobby during our business hours. Business hours are Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Any member is eligible to apply to be part of the board. Northeastern REMC assembled a nominating committee from existing members. These members review applications and interview candidates beginning in June prior to the election. Once all information has been evaluated, the nominating committee selects candidates.
Three of the nine board of directors' positions are elected annually for new three-year terms. Each term's beginning and end dates are staggered to eliminate the potential of having too many brand new board members at one time. This helps maintain a healthy duality of experience and fresh ideas.
You can learn more about the current board members at nremc.com/leadership. This is also where you can learn more about the vital role the board of directors have in your electric cooperative.
Learn more about who is eligible, what the election process is like, and more at nremc.com/leadership. This is also where you can learn more about the vital role the board of directors have in your electric cooperative.